Her Times
By Pam Parker Erie Times-News staff blogger
Pam Parker's blog takes on everything from women's fun to momisms to lifestyles around Lake Erie and real estate. She'll take you down Memory Lane, up through sports and fun and off the grid. Get ready for laughs — it's more than just Pam. It's Pamdemonium.   Read more about this blog.
 Phone: 814-870-1821
Posts tagged ‘Downton Abbey’
Posted: February 24th, 2014

maryI am still hooked on this show, but this was not my favorite season. The reviews of season 4 are in, and they are mixed.

I’m not going to spoil anything for anyone, but one of the things that hooked me on “Downton Abbey” was the history. Watching people I started to know die from the Spanish flu — was one of those historically significant events that suddenly brought history to life for me — the horror that the flu swept through a family killing people at random probably happened to many families and all of our ancestors. So did financial ruin. Women getting more to do than dress for dinner was a treat. Seeing romance in a much simpler time was intriguing. And watching a TV show take us from horses and carriages to motor vehicles was endearing.

This season did not put me in touch with history, and I didn’t see a lot of romance. I was disappointed, but maybe it’s just me. Here are the reviews and recaps so far:

From Nola.com: At loose ends.

From Time Entertainment: Having a ball.

From Washington Post: Joe Heim says the finale left us with “More questions than answers.”

From the Daily Beast:  ‘Downton Abbey’ Finale Review: The Depressing Demise of a Once-Great Show” Ouch on that one!

From Variety: “Fourth season finally fell short of PBS hit’s previous highs.” Double Ouch

I am still looking forward to season 5, but frankly, I hope it’s better than this one. How about you?

Pam Parker is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyleHer Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa. She is mom to three, stepmom to three and GramPam to one.

 

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: January 18th, 2014

DowntonAbbey1Cheeky devils — I love that Downtonism of Mrs. Patmore. And there will be a lot more topsy-turvy fun to tune into at the Watson-Curtze Mansion on Friday, Jan. 31 from 7-9:30 p.m.

You can be a party of one or an entire team — and you can dress the part … or not.

The Erie County Historical Society will host a “Downton Abbey” trivia night complete with champagne, appetizers and a screening of the show.

The grand prize will be a private evening rental of the Watson-Curtze Mansion.

Teams may include up to eight people, and tickets are just $30 per person. The price includes three complimentary glasses of champagne. Reservations are required. Please call 454-1813×24. The mansion still has plenty of room for you and your entourage. 

This event has been made possible by the Brocton Insurance Agency, Inc. Brocton, NY. Matthew P.W. Rogers, President.

Pam Parker is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyleHer Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa. She is mom to three, stepmom to three and GramPam to one.

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: January 18th, 2014

VolkmanI can’t tell you how many times I’ve ridden past the marvelous homes on Volkman Road, and said, “Wow.”

These majestic homes don’t go up for sale very often. The last home I saw belonged to John and Marianne Kanzius. It was awesome, and now we  get a peek at another one in this week’s House to Home.

The home at 6113 Volkman Road sits on 1.72 acres and offers more than 4,400 square feet of living space. Every inch of it speaks of elegance, and you can read the entire article here.   It’s listed at just under $700,000 by Loretta Dwyer Schaal and Nedra Dwyer Lehrian of RE/MAX Real Estate.

We have much more than that in this week’s House to Home:

» Greenhouse interest continues to rise – I’ve always wanted a greenhouse — well a conservatory maybe, but greenhouse gardeners are on the rise, and so is the production of greenhouses — from DIY to budget packages to big, fancy buildings.

» The art of buying art – This is a fun story — who doesn’t want to buy art? I’ve gotten great stuff — even at the Dollar Store.
» ‘Downton Abbey’ influences home, garden design – Always wanted the Downton dining room in your home? You’re not alone — the style is entering homes all over America.
» Special trees add pretty backyard color - Sue Scholz reminds us to bundle up and visit the backyard where colorful berries could be growing on branches — it’s worth a look.
» When woodpeckers come knocking  — Great insight into woodpeckers. I had one at my old home on Oakmont Avenue. He visited for years, or maybe it was more than one woodpecker. Oddly enough, he chose the attic window to peck — same time everyday — the sun glinted just right on that window and we think he saw his reflection. Not sure if it attracted a mate.
» Toilet duel between dual- and single-flush – The single flush is as complicated as we can get here at Chez Parker, but this is an interesting take on plumbing.
» Ventless fireplaces get mixed reviews  — Love ‘em or leave ‘em, but if you want a fireplace, these are a great idea.

» ‘Dollond’ telescope research offers curious history lesson – We all get a valuable lesson from an old telescope.
The real estate market is jumping, locally. Realtors report a lot of activity in that warm spell after the polar vortex. If you are looking for a new home, House to Home has you covered. Check out  our Open House locator right here. And, here’s the flipbook — you can page through House to Home on your tablet!

Happy house hunting!
Pam Parker has written about homes, interior design and real estate for more than 20 years. She is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyleHer Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa. She is mom to three, stepmom to three and GramPam to one.
Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: September 27th, 2013

Matt Damon and wifeI didn’t watch the Emmys, but I did catch up on all the best-dressed and worst-dressed lists. It’s funny that some celebs ended up on both lists depending on who compiled the lists.

With formal dress season in full swing, it’s nice to see what fashions are wearable for those of us who will never hit the red carpet, but will hit the dance floor this holiday season. I hate to say this, but I saw very few dresses that I liked.

The New York Daily News site was the the best site to see the frocks. My fave was Matt Damon’s wife Luciana Barroso’s dress by Naeem Khan. Some of the celebs look great no matter what they’re wearing, but others wore some less-than-flattering garb that often looked the dresses were wearing the celebs rather than vice versa.

Downton gown

Unusual describes the dress Michelle Dockery wore, I guess. The actress who plays Lady Mary from Downton Abbey had a backless fitted red halter top and giant skirt. The top had a semi-giant back bow — all from Prada.

You can see plenty of gowns on the New York Daily News site. Click here.

Pam Parker is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyleHer Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa. She is mom to three, stepmom to three and GramPam to one.

 

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: May 16th, 2013

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Last year, my team and I tracked and interviewed countless murder suspects, got the dirt on wealthy families that shaped Erie history and had a rip-roaring good time at the Watson-Curtze Mansion.

I felt like I was at Downton Abbey. And you can too!

It’s a real life game of Clue where actors portray the suspects — and they are stationed in various rooms of the four-story mansion and neighboring Planetarium. Everyone has a story, but you can’t always believe it — because one of them is a murderer!

Is it the doctor? The gardener? The lawyer? The spurned ex-wife? The mistress? The nanny? The long lost son or the guy who pretended to be the long lost son? Clues, clues — you must find all the clues! 

Join us — dress in your best 1920s fashions, enjoy the cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and desserts. And find the murderer!

Saturday, June 15 at  6 p.m. The after party begins at 8 p.m.

Teams of six can register for $250 before May 24. After, teams are $300. The Erie County Historical Society will match individuals and couples with a group if you do not have a team.

If you can’t make the game … join the Roaring 20s themed after party at the mansion. Tickets sold separately at only $20.

Hurry — this event sells out every year! Call 814-454-1813 x24

Pam Parker is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyleHer Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa. She is the mom of three and stepmom of three.

clue

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: May 3rd, 2013

Downton Abbey style

The clothing is coming!

The clothing is coming! And a whole lot more.

“Downton Abbey” styles goes retail this year — according to Gareth Neame in an interview with CNBC.

“We’ll be working across an entire range of products coming out this year. From fashion, apparel and homeware and furniture to wallpapers, beauty products and stationery,” Neame, who is also the show’s executive producer, told CNBC.

“Some of these things have been available since 2012 and we publish books and have made a music album, but the more complex products take time,” he said, adding that there would be even more scope for merchandising in the future.

Click on the picture — it takes you to the story from Huffington Post in the UK. Here’s the story from Huffington Post in the United Kingdom. Here’s the story from E!OnlineHere’s the story from Vogue.

Will 1920s styles sell nearly 100 years later? That will be the real story.

Pam Parker is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyleHer Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa. She is the mom of three, stepmom of three and step grandmom of one.

 

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: April 19th, 2013

Screen-shot-2013-04-05-at-8_58_17-AMI can’t help but wonder if the resurgence of The Great Gatsby-ish glam isn’t helped a little bit by Downton Abbey‘s fashions. Squidoo agrees with me — the 1920s were soo elegant. Click on the photo, and it takes you to Fashionista.com and links to the film trailer. The new movie is just weeks away from hitting theaters.

The Great Gatsby,” F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel published in 1925, returns to the screen for the sixth time. Scroll to the bottom for Wikipedia’s entire list of who’s who in the films.

Gatsby brings us lace, drop waists, satin and flowing, fluid style. Femininity reigns. It’s big fashion news in London – click here for more on that. One quirky thing is this movie was delayed in release … a few times, but fashion houses were ready. So some of us already have our Daisy Buchanan duds and frocks. I know I have at least four lacy numbers that look remarkably like what I wore in the 1970s when Gatsby was released. The colors, the fabrics — welcome back, Daisy.

Brooks Brothers is into the fashion – click here for the men’s side.

I remember the 1974 movie and the style. Daisy Buchanan was played by Mia Farrow — she’s now 68. Click here for an update on her. Robert Redford was Jay Gatsby. Farrow  married Frank Sinatra and then settled in with Woody Allen. She was a fixture on “Peyton Place” and played the mom in “Rosemary’s Baby.”And who doesn’t know Robert Redford?

Direct from Wikipedia– here are the six movies all sort of based on the novel:

  1. The Great Gatsby, 1926  – a silent movie of a stage adaptation, starring Warner Baxter, Lois Wilson, and William Powell. It is rumored ot be the best adaptation of the novel, but we’ll never know. A trailer of the film at National Archives is all anyone can find.
  2. The Great Gatsby, 1949  – starred Alan Ladd, Betty Field and Shelley Winters.
  3. The Great Gatsby, 1974 – the most famous screen version and memorable to folks like me.  Sam Waterston was narrator Nick Carraway, with Mia Farrow as Daisy Buchanan and Robert Redford as Gatsby. Get this – script by Francis Ford Coppola.
  4. The Great Gatsby, 2000  – a made-for-TV movie starring Toby Stephens, Paul Rudd and Mira Sorvino.
  5. G, 2002 – sort of based on Gastby and starring Richard T. Jones, Blair Underwood, and Chenoa Maxwell.
  6. The Great Gatsby, directed by Baz Luhrmann and starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan, and Tobey Maguire. Coming our way  May 10.

Pam Parker is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyle, Her Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa. She is the mom of three and stepmom of three.

 

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: February 19th, 2013

DowntonIt was quite a season ending episode on Sunday.

If you haven’t watched, I won’t spoil Season Three for you. It is a true soap and very dramatic. For those of you who did watch, it is rumored that a new love interest will appear in Season Four — you know who I am talking about. Cosmopolitan UK reports Tom Ellis of “Doctor Who” and “Miranda” will be joining the cast. Read more here. Huffington Post has a feature on him also.

While some of the plots are dreadfully sad — as we would say in pure Downton fashion — author Julian Fellowes says a few of the actors did not renew contracts, and that necessitated the storylines.

On the funner side, Huffington Post offers a silly rendition of One Direction’s song “What Makes You Beautiful” — here’s the video. Additional parodies are hitting Sesame Street, Youtube and Saturday Night Live.

Even Forbes suggested some ideas for finances based on Downton’s history tracing financial blunders and successes. Read it here.

Pam Parker is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyle, Her Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa. She is the mom of three, stepmom to three and step-grandmom to one.  

 

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: January 29th, 2013

Dowager countess Downton AbbeyI won’t spoil anything that happens on Downton Abbey, but the grand finale episode in February will be cause for a party and a fun night in Erie’s historic abbey. Well not really — it’s the Watson Curtze mansion on West Sixth Street — but it is historic.

On Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, patrons at Watson Curtze will dine on a British-themed menu. Dinner will be followed by a live viewing of the season finale (which airs Feb. 17 on PBS) in the mansion’s planetarium.

Dinner will be held at 7:15 p.m. with the show airing from 9 -10 p.m.

Black or white tie are encouraged.

Chef Marc Berarducci will prepare a menu that includes roasted butternut squash salads with warm cider vinaigrette, cottage pie, English roast and lemon curd tart. Cost is $75 per person including wine with dinner. RSVP deadline is Friday, Feb. 8.

RSVP to: Caleb Pifer 454-1813 x25 or cpifer@eriecountyhistory.org

Masterpiece’s Downton Abbey airs Sunday evenings on WQLN. You can catch up on all the episodes on PBS here.

Shirley MacLaine joined the show this season. The history, the fashions, the cars and the fans are incredible, and so is the award-winning writing.

I interviewed Mrs. Patmore — actress Lesley Nicol — by phone about a month ago for our January issue of Lake Erie LifeStyle – here’s the link to that interview.

The comments on Twitter can be found at #Downton.

Pam Parker is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyleHer Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa. She is the mom of three, stepmom to three and step-grandmom to one.

 

 

 

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: January 18th, 2013

IridescentMy friends at InStyle magazine are booking some shimmery beauty into their latest issues. Michelle DockeryLady Mary Crawley on “Downton Abbey,” rocks the glitz and glam in a photo shoot. The photo at left is from InStyle.

This year promises some sparking style with a big dose of shine — it’s been around for a while, and it’s not going anywhere — so keep those sparkling duds handy.

At Huffington Post, the fashionistas are into shine and much more. They suggest black and white will stay on the runway and peplum is peppering our styles as are ruffles, stripes, exposed lingerie, (not for this girl), big jewelry and lower heels. Lower heels? Again — not on this girl.

Shine on, ladies!

Pam Parker is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyle, Her Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa. She is the mom of three, stepmom to three and step-grandmom to one. 

Posted in: Uncategorized